In “What are we going to do with you?” Nicolas Hazard addresses students and everyone who is already working and evokes the jobs of tomorrow.
Nicolas Hazard is Founding President of Inco, a solidarity and sustainable investment company. He is also Special Adviser to the European Commission on the Social and Solidarity Economy and has just published What are we going to do with you? published by Flammarion.
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THE STUDENT FIGARO. – With this title What are we going to do with you? would you like to address parents or students?
Nicolas Danger. – The two! This book is aimed at all professionals and students who want to orientate themselves. We are all affected by the impending upheavals. The 4th industrial revolution we are living through (that of robotics, artificial intelligence, connected objects, the metaverse, etc.) is transforming our economy and this trend is only going to accelerate. No more linear triptych study-work-retirement, from now on we all have to go back to school.
“You don’t go from one job to another without an education” Nicholas Hazard
You begin your book with this sentence: “85% of the professions of the year 2030 do not yet exist in their current form”. Should we put you in the category of declinists or optimists?
I’m decidedly optimistic. Certainly many jobs will disappear, especially with the automation of certain jobs. However, I am convinced that, at the same time, many jobs will be created, and to a greater extent than those that will be destroyed. But be careful, I’m optimistic, but also vigilant. We do not switch from one job to another unskilled, and that is the basic message of my book: There is an urgent need to prepare and educate yourself to practice the professions of tomorrow.
So you have a very Schumpeterian view of our society?
Probably yes. Previous industrial revolutions have shown us that our economy abhors a vacuum. Contrary to popular belief, the countries with the most robots in the world, I am thinking of Japan in particular, are those with one of the lowest unemployment rates in the world, around 3%. The great challenge of this industrial revolution and one of its peculiarities is that it is no longer just workers who are affected. Employees will also see their jobs done faster and more efficiently by artificial intelligence (AI).
As we read them, we realize that it is the contact and relationship professions that will ride this AI wave.
What will be most sought after tomorrow will be the complementarity between robots and humans. It’s called cobotics. The robot will do what it does best, i.e. the most repetitive and difficult tasks, while the human will focus more on what makes them unique: their ability to communicate, have empathy, analyze complex problems, new things to invent … This is another reason for optimism, beyond the clichés of science fiction, robots will not replace us, but complement them.
Let’s talk about training. Inco, which you chair, claims to have trained more than 400,000 people worldwide. Training is therefore part of your DNA. And so it’s no coincidence that you talk about training throughout this book…
Inco is a group I founded about ten years ago that aims to build a new, more sustainable economy that benefits everyone. Training people for tomorrow’s jobs is one of them, especially for those furthest from employment. Our goal is to make it easier for them to get started so that they can find their place in the job market. Following all these paths, their difficulties but also their successes, has led me to share my experiences in this book.
“Traditional pedagogy has the edge”Nicholas Hazard
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Does this mean that we need to reform our education model?
This seems to me to be an absolute priority despite a struggling faculty. But it is clear that traditional pedagogy has the edge. Countries like Denmark or Finland (in the top group of the famous PISA ranking) have for some time introduced so-called active pedagogies, that is, where the child is the central actor in his learning. It is no longer an individual knower (the teacher) who transmits his knowledge to the students, who must swallow it before it is evaluated, but the child who constructs his knowledge through research situations.
And when the next Secretary of Labor asks you for advice. What would it be?
Beyond the school, it is also the entire education system that we need to review from the ground up. Both, of course, through the evolution of training, but also through the development of alternative methods such as AFEST (which allows training only in a company), through the development of VAE (to obtain professional certifications through the validation of the achievements of his experiences) … Supporting his youth has to be an absolute priority and we have to pack the package.
Let’s stay with the gallery of 21 professions that you present. It ranges from “Nano Doctor” to “Nostalgic” to “Re-Wild” to “Robot Psychologist”. It’s almost science fiction…
Rather, it is a projection in relation to what is already there. Let’s take the example of the meta-architect, basically a person who builds your home or business for you in virtual reality worlds, those parallel worlds where the youngest spend most of their time. You should know that some are already spending millions (and that’s not a term) to acquire land to build buildings on. It may sound crazy, but it’s already a very real economic reality. The rise of cryptocurrencies coupled with virtual reality will create these new jobs. Just like cricket breeders: We are 8 billion people who will soon be 10 billion in a few decades. We will need new sources of protein to feed the planet, especially given the carbon footprint of a prime rib… Many countries in Africa and Asia are doing this on a large scale. So yes, there will be many vocations to pursue the profession of cricket raising!
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Any advice for parents and students?
With this book I wanted to show that we can all find our place in the job market. There will be many opportunities, so we have to be positive about the future. There are certainly scientific professions, a kind of holy grail of the labor market, but not only… Whether creative professions, relationship and communication professions or those that demand our analytical skills, there is something for every taste. The secret of tomorrow’s success is simple: you have to keep educating yourself throughout your life. Our students must clearly understand that what they learn today is important, but will not be enough. And in the end all the better, because at a young age you don’t always find your way around, experimenting and learning are part of it. Ultimately, it is all about learning how to learn.